A mobile crane overturned onto a house in the town of Billericay, Essex, UK earlier today.
The crane a 35 tonne two axle Terex/PPM All Terrain owned and operated by local company Snook’s Lifting, was placing building materials - reportedly glazing panels – behind the house when something clearly caused an overload situation, resulting in the crane losing stability. The ground or outrigger set up was clearly not a factor.
We understand that no one was hurt in the incident, although the crane operator had to be rescued and was treated at the scene, possibly for shock or bruising.
This crane has a relatively long boom for its size, and it is possible that if working close to capacity, a dynamic load resulting from lowering the extended boom too quickly - to gain a little more radius - or overriding the load indicator are examples of possible causes.
An open letter from Snook's has been published which updates and provides more detail on this incident
Further to the recent incident in Billericay, Essex involving our crane we would like to clarify a few details.
Our crane was hired in under CPA Hire (which for those who do not know is crane and operator hire only) the planning, supervision and execution of the lift was undertaken by a 3rd party lifting company.
We are pleased to confirm that NO injury to any personnel on site was sustained, the site was made safe by the emergency services very quickly. Our driver was advised to stay in the cab of the crane (not 'trapped' as reported) due to the proximity of a power cable.
The crane was recovered at approximately 6pm on the day of the incident. We are very grateful for the quick response and professionalism of the recovery team.
Upon hearing the news that our crane was involved, all our personnel were dispatched to the incident along with very close colleagues/ friends from other crane companies, the recovery of our crane was a big team effort and I could not of asked for anything more! thank you.
The crane sustained minimal damage, radius cable was pinched but not broken and a few scratches on the boom.
The roof of the house also sustained minimal damage (although the pictures make it look worse than it is) I believe it is already in the process of being rectified.
We (us and the 3rd party company) have an extensive task of figuring out the exact cause of why the crane was overloaded. We have obtained witness statements from all personnel on site which have all been taken into account.
The crane was setup and levelled perfectly with the outriggers pinned and counterweight on. The crane was not overloaded by our driver as he was at a pre-warning stage which is 90% of full capacity (this does not included the built in safety factor), the crane was within its duties. There are other factors which could cause an overload but we are still unclear of the exact cause. We have already had the crane examined, calibration tested and all results have come back that the crane was in perfect working order.
We are still working close with the contractors involved and the home owners themselves will kept up to date with progress - the investigation is still on going.
On a more personal note, we are very disappointed at the amount of speculation and negativity which has now tainted our name as a company for something we had no control over. We are a small family run business specialising in Contract Lifting, we bought a crane as the next step up in our business development but now feel that we need to ensure all future projects we are involved in are under our control.
The Contract Lifting and Plant Movement side of our company has always had will continue to have a 100% safety record and 100% success rate on all projects.
Thank you for taking the time to read the above (I'm sure only a few will read to the end)